Tips for Protecting Spray Tanks from Contamination

Man spraying herbicide

Man spraying herbicide

It is always recommendable to wash the sprayer between in-crop and pre-seed applications. Of course, every farmer wants to make sure that all their products are cleaned thoroughly before spraying their plantation. Reliable spray tank manufacturers recommend the use of surfactants or canola-crop herbicides to remove any residue deposit from the sprayer plumbing or tank walls.

Rain or wind can delay spraying and cause the concentration of scrubbed-free herbicides to continue to increase. That means that farmers might need to learn to clean out their products and understand the risks that each tank mix and products present. Here are incredible tips for avoiding the contamination of a spray tank:

Clean Screens and Filters

In-line filters and nozzle screens are some of the most overlooked components of a sprayer that can be a reservoir for undissolved and undiluted herbicides. You might need to remove all nozzle screens and filters and clean them with fresh water. After that, run clean water through the pipes that lead to the screens and nozzles. You can also consider having another set of screens to allow ample cleaning and soaking time with the other set.

Use Cleaning Additives

You might need to check the labels of all herbicide products to see the recommendable cleaners. Ammonia alone might not be enough for some herbicide products, but a surfactant or detergent alone can be enough. However, a farmer might need a combination of both for some herbicide products. One of these combinations is All-Clear, while some of the ammonia-based products include Flush and Finish.

Spray Until the Tank is Empty

Never let herbicide solutions sit in the spray tank for long, and don’t store the sprayer before initiating the clean-out procedure. Experts recommend that all herbicides be crop-safe. Spraying previously sprayed crops to empty the tank can’t be destructive. However, farmers might need to reduce the concentration to be certain and note the areas that have already been sprayed with higher loads of herbicides. After that, add clean water to the tank and spray it out on the crops as well.

Remove Solid Herbicide Residue

Man spraying outside

Herbicides often use clay as a carrier, but some precipitate out of a solution. As such, herbicides can get trapped in some parts of the plumbing or spray tank. However, visual inspection enables a farmer to spot these issues and keep their spray tank cleaned and in its optimum efficiency.

Safe Disposal of Rinsate

Experts recommend that farmers always spray out their tank in the field. Never drain the tank unless you are sure that it doesn’t contain any pesticide. Make sure that you are away from any waterways or sensitive area. Alternatively, consider building a biobed for the disposal of rinsate.

Of course, every farmer knows the importance of cleaning out their spray tank. Cleaning helps protect people working with the sprayer as well as any sensitive crop. Cleaning a spray tank can be a tedious task, but with the tips given above, it should be smooth and less costly. With the right detergent or surfactant, cleaning a spraying tank isn’t a complicated task.

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